One of the goals of my practice-based research in interactive theatre and serous computer games is to explore how artists can frame science and technology in a context that gives meaning to the monumental change in our society as a result of humans and computers interacting. So, humans, interact with my ideas on screen -- some published work, some not.
"The Creative and Reflexive Realms of Gamaturgy," Journal article, Loading v3 #8 (2008)
This article introduces the synergy between theatre, games, and social activism that I have coined “Gamaturgy.” Gamaturgy, in both the creative and reflexive realms, as I describe them, is derived from theatrical dramaturgy and provides new ideas for creating and critically analyzing serious videogames, especially social issue games.
"This Ain't Your Teacher's Old School," Poster from Meaningful Play at Michigan State University, 2008.
Through a series of Grades 5 through 9 case studies at Willow Park School in Calgary, Canada, I reflect on
"The Paradigmatic Shift of Interactive Theatre into Aleatory, Tribal Playspaces ."As a way of envisioning futuristically appropriate player experiences, this paper speculates on the emergence of participatory virtual environments as a metamaterial phenomena resulting from the confluence of aleatory, tribal playspaces and human-computer interaction (HCI). Using a set of revolutionary influences from 1960s, namely Thomas Kuhn, Marshall McLuhan, Victor Turner, and John Cage, the stage is set for virtual playspaces and postulations are made about the ability of these influences to affect theatre’s core axioms. Reflections are made on the resistance that might occur, notably in the form of audience reticence, and requisite conditions are laid out for the emergence of a new paradigm in the landscape of theatre.
"Rational Game Theory and Serious Video Games ."Evolving from a Philosophy term paper called "What's In It For Me?" this essay uses examples of serious video games, both produced and in concept stage, to show how they might be analyzed in the context of game-theoretic strategies such as the mathematical Nash Equilibrium and as interactions within philosophical considerations of Virtual Ethics.
This paper was presented at FuturePlay 2006 in London, Ontario.
"Theatre Art, Human-Computer Interaction and Serious Video Gameplay ." Co-authored with J.R. Parker, this paper speculates on a paradigm shift in theatre as a result of experiments in theatre art and human-computer interaction (HCI).
This paper was published in the proceedings of the Culture, Creativity, and Interaction Workshop at HCI Engage in London U.K. September, 2006. Download the pdf paper.
"Guerrilla Games in Performance Mode ."This is when Augusto Boal's Forum Theatre first started its journey of significance into my theatre and games research. In this paper, Boal's theory of audience participant "spectactors" starts connecting with the idea that serious (guerrilla) video games also leave room for players to express their own solutions.
"Serious Games and Activist Theatre as Social Force"
"Opening Doors to Interactive Playspaces: Fragmenting Story Structure into Games." Co-authored with J.R. Parker, this paper describes how the fragmentary and temporally non-linear story construction of the Spies in the Oilsands Intermedia script might open doors of opportunity for audience/players to participate in the spatial explorationof interactive play spaces, notably computer games and virtual reality environments.
This paper was presented in 2005 at
the Interactive Entertainment conference in Sydney, Australia.
Personas and Scenarios: Vital Steps in Both Theatre Art and Goal-Directed
In this paper, presented at the
Creativity & Cognition Conference 2005, London, the works of theatrical
performance practitioners are drawn upon to develop key points of conceptual
convergence between the artistry of theatrical performance and the system
of Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) known as Goal-Directed design (GDD).
These findings are then framed within a supplemental instructional design
that identifies an innovative method of developing personas and constructing
goal-initiated scenarios that may, theoretically, improve upon Cooper’s
Goal-Directed design methods.
In this paper, presented at the Creativity & Cognition Conference 2005, London, the works of theatrical performance practitioners are drawn upon to develop key points of conceptual convergence between the artistry of theatrical performance and the system of Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) known as Goal-Directed design (GDD). These findings
are then framed within a supplemental instructional design that identifies an innovative method of developing personas
and constructing goal-initiated scenarios that may, theoretically, improve upon Cooper’s Goal-Directed design methods.
This paper was presented at Creativity & Cognition Conference 2005, London, UK.
This paper was presented at Creativity & Cognition Conference 2005, London, UK.
Messaging in the Noosphere: Theatre Art, Integrated Media, and Human-Computer Interaction
Versions of this performance project were presented in 2004 at the University of Calgary Happenings Festival (2004), at the University of Art and Design, Helsinki, Finland, and at the Interactions Conference, University of Technology, Sydney, Australia.
Messaging has its very own megabyte-intense sector of this web site and follow THIS LINK if you want to experience thismulti-modal practice-based research case study. Grab a glass of robust red wine to savour the full extent of the delirium.
This version of the paper was published in the proceedings of the Interaction: Systems, Practice and Theory Symposium at the University of Technology, Sydney, Australia in November 2004.
Oscar Wilde and Joe Orton
A Goal-driven "Gameshow" Research Paper by Lori Shyba (2003).
This is in a dual-adventure research paper format. You can get an experiential "gameshow" read out of it by paying attention to the Gameshow Avatar interjections, or just a pleasant academic read if you ignore the avatar's lines.
As you probably know, Oscar Wilde is best-known as an Irish dramatist, poet novelist, writer of beautiful children's stories and convicted criminal. He was probably the most famous homosexual ever. Joe Orton was also famous as a dramatist, convicted criminal, and homosexual and was known as "The Oscar Wilde of the welfare state gentility."
Download this paper and see who wins in a battle of sightgags, simultaneous plotlines, wit and punnery, injokes and parody, and cloaked subversion. Wilde or Orton. Includes a French scene-by-scene time-action chart of character relationships and witty, subversive quotes.
Theatrical Explorations in Virtual Reality: Mark Reaney’s "The Adding Machine" and Brenda Laurel’s "Placeholder"
In this paper, I looked at the formative work of two artists whose work has made an impact on theatre history through their utilization of two distinct forms of virtual reality — Mark Reaney, represented by his designs for Elmer Rice’s play, The Adding Machine, and Brenda Laurel, represented by her original collaborative work Placeholder.
What are their common ideologies, and where do their theories and practices diverge? What is the process, both creative and technical, behind the making of the art of virtual reality? And, considering the cultural climate of the early 1990s, how can one contextualize these works within the genre of dramatic arts? Are Reaney’s and Laurel’s work considered theatre, performance art, visual art installation, or hybrid forms?
Acting for the Camera: A Module of Learning for Advanced Actors
Advanced acting students, in a studio situation that made continual use of a unique “internal and external” mask training method, made a surprisingly smooth transition from stage performance to screen performance — a stylistic leap that is often a problem for actors. Was is something about this mask technique that facilitated this relatively easy adjustment? How does the ideal of “truth” connect as criteria against which the effectiveness of their performances could be measured? Drawing upon the expertise of three master acting coaches, as well as upon the students' survey feedback, my aim in this essay was to investigate possible reasons why mask training provides a solid foundation for believable performances, both on stage and on screen.